We had two flyers, one with lots of the best quotes from all the judges around the world. The other had "Release Odhran Fortune" on one side, with the story and the picture of his mom and brother holding up signs "Free My Son" and "Free My Brother". The other side had "Scientology Killed Lisa McPherson", the basic story of how she died, a photo of her from Jeff's page, and a shot of her hand from the autopsy.
We had a photographer from OSA Invest. come out. He was known at the first Clearwater picket as "Sam Clemens". I asked him his name, and he told me "Peter Hacker". Arnie later told me that wasn't his name, so I asked him again. He refused to confirm or deny that his name was actually Peter Hacker. He smoked cigars most of the day.
Sue Taylor came out after a while, but not to see us. She was heading down the street on an errand. I said "Hi, Sue". She gave me this really intense look and said "I don't know you". Well, of course Sue knows me. I picketed the org two years ago, and she came down to see us at Clearwater I. I had breakfast with her at the HoJo's. Unlike those events, she didn't seem to be in charge of the DC folks. I guess the rumors that she's been busted and/or RPF'd are true. Sylvia is now in charge, at least for OSA. The staff seemed uneasy when I asked them why Sue pretended not to know me. I'll be interested to see when she's offloaded.
Big Beard didn't hang on to any handlers for very long. He'd start telling them about the FSO documents that describe Lisa's treatment at the FH, and they'd have to leave. It's difficult to call FSO documents lies.
They had a bunch of young women handing out leaflets, one of whom was Sylvia's daughter Gwen. They just had the generic leaflets, not the DA page. That they reserved for Alex, an OSA PR, who only handed it out to people who took one of our flyers. Alex tried to engage me in conversation, but he never got very far. "Look, you're not one of those copyright violators. Why are you doing this? You're one of the good guys". I replied "Yes, and you're the bad guys". He was too easy.
My sign had "Scientology is a Scam" on one side and "Release Odhran Fortune!" on the other. They all claimed they'd never heard of Odhran before, nor the 1500 protesters in Ireland. Sylvia claimed never to have heard of him before, despite also claiming to read a.r.s and my Week in Review. One of those is a lie. So Sylvia - if you're reading this, I hope your daughter never grows up to be like you.
One OSA came out of the org, and tried to get me to say something incriminating. I guess he had a microphone. He told me he'd like to firebomb the place. I asked "Didn't you just come out of there?" He told me he had gone in to make trouble, but had chickened out. I disagreed, that I'd never advocate firebombing anything. He then went around coordinating the young women distributing leaflets.
It was an Open House weekend in DC, with the Jive Aces performing. We didn't even know about it, but our protest didn't overlap with their performance. They discussed bringing out a boom box to blast us with Jive Aces music, but decided against it. We were pretty spread out across the front and side of the building, so it would have had to have been pretty loud to have an effect.
We had a post-picket relaxation time to rehydrate at an open air seating area across the street from the org. They parked themselves at the entrance, and we heard them coordinating leaflet girls for a couple blocks around, so they could track us when we split up. I think it's a shame to use children on Invest. ops like that. We took the Metro out of there, and were followed to the station by "Peter Hacker".
That's about it. DC area folks who would be interested in joining if we decide to do this again can contact your ARSCC project handler, and we'll get it together.
From: lnieman@NOSPAM.ix.netcom.com (BigBeard) Newsgroups: alt.religion.scientology Subject: Picket Report (My 1st!) - 07/19/97 - DC Org Date: Sun, 20 Jul 1997 23:33:37 GMT Lines: 234 Message-ID: <email@example.com> Sorry if this is a little long. My first picket and I'm still a bit hyper (even after the drive back)! Saturday: Grabbed a couple of McMuffins & coffee and hit the road around 08:30. After a most pleasant drive through the country, I met Arnie, Rod, and some of Xenu's other friends around 13:45. (I'm terrible with names, Rod may have some of the other SPs noted in his report.) After a brief flurry of sign making we jumped in the blue ARSCC limo and hit the Org just before 'Libs'. Side note: There was a lot of interest in our signs during the ride to the Org. Seems the Cof$'s rep isn't all that great in the area. When we first arrived there was a pretty young lady in uniform standing on the stoop at the main entrance of the building. I started thinking, "Well, at least their door-person's uniform isn't as ostentatious as some places in DC. Just one simple lanyard, and no braid on the sleaves. She's kind of cute too." Just as I was starting to fall in lust^H^H^Hove it hit me. "Uniform? Lanyard? Sea Ogre?!? Nah, she couldn't be. Way to pretty." So I asked Arnie about it, and he confirmed, sure enough, she was Sea Org. Bummer. [Note for OSA: Don't bother siccing her on me next time, (and yes there will be a next time - but when?) as I noticed later she definately has a boyfriend. Double bummer. And I'm not into breaking up relationships.] We all started hitting our personal walking strides and got spread out a bit. About that time a shutter bug came out and started taking our pictures. Didn't get his name, but I'll call him 'The Cigar' because he smelled like a cheap one, even when he wasn't smoking one. Believing in equal opportunity, I took one of him. Arnie came by, and I asked 'Cigar' to get one of us together and he obliged. Later I asked him when I could stop by for copies of the prints, but he just scowled. A few minutes later the pretty door-person disappeared and a frizzy haired lady without a uniform came out and started talking with the other picketers. I asked Rod who she was, and if I'm remembering right I believe he said her name was Sylvia. Not sure what she was, but I was getting disappointed at being ignored, even though I was obviously a new face on the street. About 10 minutes later a 'civilian' (almost said member of the 'public', but 'public' has another meaning here on a.r.s.) asked me, "Who's Lisa McPherson, and what'd they do to her?" as he pointed to signs referencing her case. So I explained it to him. Also told him about the FSO logs, and the way Cof$ members will say $cientology is compatible with Christianity but their IRS paperwork for tax exempt status says differently. Suggested he stop by IRS on a lunch break some time and check it out himself. Said he just might. Seeing me talking with a 'civilian' finally got 'The Cigars' notice. He came over and started asking me why I was doing the picket. I told him it was because, "Their scumbag lawyers had proveably lied to my ISP trying to get my account pulled. And I didn't like what the Cof$ did to Lisa McPhearson." He started talking about the autopsy reports, and how there was a contradictory opinion. I just said, "Okay, fine. The autopsy reports cancle out." "But what about the FSO logs that show Lisa was under under fed, got little fluid, was given controlled drugs by people without a license, and almost not fed when her money ran out?" I pointed out these were Flag documents, produced by Flag lawyers in the Florida court case. And I didn't think Flag would make themselves look so bad on purpose. He said he didn't know anything about that. I suggested he contact Flag for a copy of the logs and find out for himself. He just went away after that and kept going back and forth with Rod for a while. Strange. 'Frizzy Hair' (Sylvia?) came over then. She had the same questions, and got almost the same answers. Just like 'The Cigar', she "Didn't know anything about that", in reference to the FSO logs on Lisa. Gave her the same suggestion I'd give 'The Cigar' about getting a copy of the logs from Flag and finding out. She went away too. I was beginning to wonder if the beard was turning them off. A couple of young ladies came out and were hanging in front of the building making comments for a while. They tried bringing up the conflicting autopsy reports too. One of them mentioned she had been to flag for 3 months, so I asked if she knew who supplied them with the unlicensed controlled drugs they used on Lisa. Got a blank stare, so I explained it to her. Told her to look in the FSO logs if she didn't believe me. They went away. Another guy came out and started giving out a DA sheet on Arnie, and a skinny lady photog slipped across to the opposite corner and was snapping pics as we turned and walked towards her. The 'DA' came over after a bit and started the, "What'd we ever do to you?" game again. So I told him. Then he started making comments about how I was spreading lies on the handouts, and that making fun of $cientologies beliefs made me like the KKK going after black churches. I pointed out that a) I wasn't handing out any leaflets (which I wasn't), and that b) I have stated many times on the InterNet that $cientologist can believe what they wanted, it was the organizations actions I was against. Then I asked if he had read the FSO logs yet? Response, "I don't know anything about that. And wouldn't believe anything you guys posted on the net anyway." I said, "No problem. Write the Clerk of the Court down there and ask for a copy. It's a public court document now." Strange thing happened. He went away. He started talking with Rod, so I suggested Rod give him the address of the Clerk of the Court, if he had it. And if he didn't, I suggested 'DA' just contact Flag for a copy. If you can't believe Flag, who can you believe right? Some time later the first 'civilian' I had talked with came by walking in the opposite direction. He got into a discussion with the 'DA' guy. On one pass I heard the 'DA' telling the guy about what great abilities $cientology could give an individual. So in passing I asked 'DA', "If $cientology makes you so able at the upper levels, why don't you have someone just 'intention' us picketers away?" And I suggested to the 'civilian' he ask for an explanation of 'intention beams' if he didn't understand what I had just suggested. And that if he got one, he should figure out for himself just who had the most 'knarly powers', since we were still picketing. I noticed the 'Skinny' photog on the corner had a bad habit. She held her finger about 1/4" above the shutter release button. So there was just an instant of noticable motion before her picture would click. So I turned on my camera flash as I approached the corner. Then, just as she would mash the button on her $1,500 Nikon, I flashed her with my $13.95 disposable Kodak. I could tell she was really getting annoyed about the 5th time I did it. Must be rough getting flashed through the view finder. So much for being 'at cause over MEST'. A bit before 18:00 a guy with a cell phone showed up on the stoop. He started directing a bunch of youngsters (14-24?) with leaflets to get spread out in a four block radius and start passing out Cof$'s info. He then got on the phone, and in a rather harried voice told someone, "I've sent out what we've got and I'm trying to round up more bodies." He did not sound very happy. Musta been a 'down stat' kind of day. We must have messed up 'Liberty', or whatever they call it, for the youngsters. Because I overheard one of them comment to another, "Why'd these jerks pick now of all times to come picket?" Or they thought we were going to stay all the way through the 'Jive Aces' concert so they'd end up missing it. But us SPs aren't as nasty as the OSA, so we didn't do that to them. [Note for OSA: Random pickets have been talked about on a.r.s. for months now. And the Foundation Org wasn't even close to ready for one on a "Jive Aces Open House Weekend" at Liberty time?? Tsk, tsk, tsk. Someone's "Ethics" hanging out? Or was it just our knarly SP powers that let us know about that, hhmmmm? What's that? Oh, you know who the insider is? Riiiiight.] As they were dispearsing into the distance, a "Real Official Looking" dude, wearing sick looking lime green suit, came out. He sat on the top step with a pad, apparently writing down known names and what each sign said. I stopped walking for a second to make it easier for him, and gave him both sides of mine: "$scientology: So much control, So little caring" and "$cientology is a Scam". By this time most everyone had adjourned across the street for a break and water, so I headed that way too. After a bit of water, and mutual debriefs, we decided to call it a day. As we were leaving we discovered our awesome SP powers were still at work. They apparently hadn't noticed us at the cafe and thought we were gone. They let the some of the crew that had been holed up inside, to protect them from the "nasty SPs" or course, out for their 'Lib'. So the whole crowd, including what appeared to be a bunch of "public" there for the 'Jive Aces', got an upclose look at what some folks think of $cientology as we were leaving. We then headed for the Metro, with at least one 'follower' in tow. We invented a neat way to shake a tail sort of by accident. (Full briefing at the next arscc(wde) meeting). Over all, I'd say it was a very successful picket. Lots of flyers given out, and lots of public support. Three gentleman from a local AME church even came by, and when a $cieno tried DAing us to them, they turned around and spent a considerable amount of time trying to convert the $cieno "from his sinful ways". The one consistent thing I noticed is that whenever the FSO logs were brought up, and the contents explained to them, they would get a 'dead' look in their eyes and then they would go away. I think underneath all the bluster and hubbub they are beginning to understand they've been lied to by their own people about Lisa. And if it turns out we were right about Lisa, what else might us SPs be right about? They are beginning to doubt, and with doubt comes questioning, and with questioning....? Picket Report Addendum That would have been it, except for a bizarre happening the next morning. I left Arnie & crew to go visit some friends I have in the area. I stayed over night, and in the morning we went down to a certain breakfast place I enjoy. The coffee lady came by, did her thing, and said our wait-person would be with us shortly. So, while we were waiting, I pulled out some flyers Arnie had given me to show my friend. I was in the middle of going over the Lisa McPherson side of one flyer when our wait-person showed up. Talk about major enturbulation! It was one of the Org youngsters that had been sent out to the hither street corners with their flyers the day before. Gotta pay for them courses somehow I guess. The recognition was mutual, and almost instant. I thought there was going to be a person shaped hole in the wall for a second, but after a deep breathe and a double take, it was just, "Are you ready to order?" Things were slow, and the individual hasn't been involved very long, so eventually I was able to get a dialog going. To make a long story short, I suggested that if this individual wasn't going to take our side at face value, not to just take their word for things either. And to check things out him/her (not saying which) self. Pointed out all of the justices sayings, how many countries were involved, and asked if he/she really thought that many different jurist would be biased against Cof$? The flyers went into an apron pocket, not the trash bucket. Hail Xenu! BigBeard 0111 1110 Katana ko chi & SPsoo(p)
From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MARGARETH1) Newsgroups: alt.religion.scientology Subject: Re: DC Picket Report - 7/19/97 Date: 21 Jul 1997 06:52:53 GMT Message-ID: <19970721065201.CAA23940@ladder02.news.aol.com> References: <email@example.com> Ted Mayett wrote: >Margaret I absolutely loved your sign! I did too, though I was not the one who made it. (For those who haven't seen the pics, it said, "$CIENTOLOGY HATES GAYS, BUT THEY LOVE YOUR MONEY!"). I think it may have been the most effective sign in the picket for hitting the scns where it hurts (in the pocketbook, of course). Dupont Circle, where the org is located, has an extremely large and affluent gay population. Many gay couples walked by, and I made sure they got a good look at my sign. One man said "Thanks for doing this. I had no idea Scientology was homophobic." Another stopped and was looking rather intently at my sign, and I said, "They'll cure you, if you pay them enough." He said, "Oh, lovely..." :-) The OSA guy with a (yukkh!) cigar, taking pictures, kept saying "It's a lie! That sign is a lie!". :-) (BTW, does anyone know why those picture-taking OSA guys always wear Hawaiian shirts? This guy's shirt had fish on it.) In some ways it was a much more satisfying picket than the Clearwater one, where my sign was totally blocked much of the time, and where there was also not as much foot traffic. In the DC one I positioned myself much of the time so that the people who received the scieno handouts (big-eye space alien type on the cover) would then look up and see my sign. If the marks were apparently heterosexual, I would often use the other side of my sign, which said, "SCIENTOLOGY=DEATH (LISA MACPHERSON) ARE YOU NEXT? A couple of women asked me about this, and listened with interest to the story. I liked the diversity of the signs in the picket (I agree, a $360,000 one would have been good). Hmm...I just had an Idea for a picket sign: "THE $360,000 QUESTION: "WHO IS XENU?" It was fun riding down on the subway with our signs--they garnered a lot of interested looks and some questions and conversation. Well, that's 'bout it. Margaret H.